HealthLawProf Blog

Editor: Katharine Van Tassel
Akron Univ. School of Law

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Thursday, February 19, 2009

Human Rights for Fertilized Eggs

The Associated Press reports on the North Dakota House's new law providing human rights for fertilized eggs.  The story states,

A measure approved by the North Dakota House gives a fertilized human egg the legal rights of a human being, a step that would essentially ban abortion in the state. . . . It now moves to the North Dakota Senate for its review.  The bill declares that "any organism with the genome of homo sapiens" is a person protected by rights granted by the North Dakota Constitution and state laws.

The measure's sponsor, Rep. Dan Ruby, R-Minot, said the legislation did not automatically ban abortion. . . . "This is very simply defining when life begins, and giving that life some protections under our Constitution — the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness."  Critics of the measure say it will cost millions of dollars to defend. Ruby said the state has been willing to go to bat for other principles that were less important.

In Oklahoma, meanwhile, a state House committee Tuesday approved legislation that would prohibit physicians from performing abortions solely on account of the gender of a woman's fetus, even though the measure's author said there is no evidence the practice has ever occurred in the state. . . .

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/healthlawprof_blog/2009/02/human-rights-fo.html

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